Over the past several years I’ve did a lot of research on narcissistic behavior. I’ll be honest, when I was first introduced to the term by friends and family I was lost. I had no idea the meaning and I sure as hell didn’t want to believe that I had children with and married a narcissist.
I was once told that someone can only pretend to be someone they aren’t for a short period of time and were they ever right! As much as I didn’t want to believe it the signs all kept presenting themselves. My life quickly started to revolve around what “he” had going on, what “he” thought was right or wrong.
I worked a full-time job, as many hours as he did. In fact, we worked at the same place. If he was scheduled to be off at 4pm he expected the kids and I to be home when he got there by 4:30. If he called me while he was at work and I didn’t answer his call it was a huge fight (because I must have been up to no good). He didn’t actually say that I couldn’t go to lunch with friends while he was at work but he would start a fight over the money I spent. Money that he didn’t think should have been spent, money I worked hard for. He beat my confidence down to nonexistence. If I got dressed in my work uniform and did my hair and make up he wanted to know who I was trying to impress. If I got dressed up when we went somewhere together he would make comments about my weight or tell me I shouldn’t be drinking a soda because I’m not going to lose weight. He literally made me feel so uncomfortable in my own skin. If I wore jeans and a T-shirt I was boring and not trying to keep his attention. My life was a constant lose lose situation. I went about life doing what I thought was easiest. I did what he wanted, made the decisions I thought he would make, kept my mouth shut and took care of my kids. I began to resent him, I began to hate him. As much as I hated him I couldn’t bring myself to leave him. I felt like I couldn’t hurt him. He didn’t have a lot of family. My family was his family. I thought it was better for me to hurt than for me to hurt him. I felt sorry for him. Unfortunately one day I just couldn’t do it anymore. I made the decision to entertain another man in hopes that he would feel the pain he had put me through as he had cheated on me more than once. I hoped that he would just leave me. I was content with letting the world think that I ruined our marriage as long as I didn’t have to leave him because I didn’t have the heart.
Fast forward and that’s exactly what happened. He ran my name in the dirt and made himself out to be nothing more than a victim. Of course the world didn’t know the life I had lived because in public I put on a smile and we were a happy family. Its been 5 years since we divorced and FINALLY the world is starting to see through him. He’s treating his current girlfriend and mother of his child the same way he treated me. I’ve never felt the need to explain myself because if you know me well then you know all of the details but I can say that it did make me feel good to see that it wasn’t just me! I wasn’t the problem. I’ve been remarried for 2 years and it’s the best! He’s been in a relationship for 5 years and I sit back and see all of the same things that I went through. She lives the life I used to live walking on eggshells daily. The worst part is, he doesn’t see it! He thinks that everyone else is the problem. He thinks he’s a great man.
Sadly, I have to tell you that it hasnt completely went away for me. We share 3 children. Coparenting is a nightmare. It’s his way or no way. Of course I have no reason to just go with the flow anymore. I speak up and get called a lot of names, I get told how much I’ve changed and that I’m not the same person and it’s not a good look.
If you have a significant other like this in your life the only advice I can give you is to be strong and have thick skin. I’ve had to make a lot of sacrifices to get where I am today and a lot of people don’t understand. The reality of it is you will never understand until you’ve walked in my shoes. The bits and pieces I’ve shared today are a few things that I felt could shared without getting too personal. I’ve been through it y’all! Get out! They are who they are and they aren’t capable of change. Find your happiness!!